Upcoming Event :
The 2nd annual conference of the Istanbul Network for Liberty
Islam and the Institutions of a Free Society.
Venue: The Marriott Hotel, Aga Khan Road,
Shalimar 5-PO Box 1251 Islamabad, Pakistan,
February 28th, 1st March, 2nd March, 2013.
The purpose of this conference is to gather an interdisciplinary group of people with a common interest in expounding the relationship between Islam and the values and institutions of a free society and their implementation in mainly Muslim countries today.
You can email the us your details
The registration fees:-
For full conference and 3 nights in the hotel: £600/$960
Non-resident rate for 2 days of conference £75/$120/ PAK Rs 8500
Non-resident rate for 1 day of conference £40/$64/ PAK Rs 5000Payment: Can be by credit card for those staying in the hotel or by cash on the day for those staying locally. The Marriott Hotel: Has been chosen because of its high level of security. Airport Collection: You will be collected from the airport and driven to the hotel and vice versa which is included in the registration fee. Visas: Are relatively easy to get for Pakistan but nevertheless don’t leave it too late to apply Please submit to
- Conference Dates: February 28, March 1st, March 2nd ,2013.
- For Program;
About the Istanbul Network for Liberty
The Istanbul Network (INFOL) is a group of individuals and organisations who are dedicated to rehabilitate and advance a strong commitment to individual freedom, tolerance, the rule of law, the protection of private property, free markets, free speech and limited government in the Muslim world. Development of Muslim intellectual thought, particularly with reference to libertarian ideas of individual liberty and responsibility, limited government, free Market economy and rule of law, is our passion.
It was founded on October 1st 2011 in Istanbul at a meeting of 55 people, mostly Muslims or from mainly Muslin countries, who shared a mission “to explore the principles and values of a free society within a Muslim world”. Because of the strong evidence that there is less poverty where people are economically freer almost all were already involved in work to improve understanding of the principles and practice of a free society. The obvious next step was to consider the relationship between freedom, prosperity and Islam.
The founding members came from Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Egypt, Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kosovo, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom and United States.
The first Infol conference was held in Fez Morocco, on April 25th, 2012. (http://istanbulnetwork.org/events) A total of eight papers were presented by each of the main speakers who were followed by a commentator and then general discussion.
Most Islamic societies today lack freedom. Their political, legal and economic systems lack the underpinning institutions that enable enterprise to flourish. As a result, the majority of citizens in such societies remain in abject poverty. We want to change all that by promoting free market economy and limited government principles.
Infol 2013 will be chaired by Dr Azhar Aslam. Please feel free to contact any of those whose emails are listed above.
The Istanbul Network for Liberty was founded on the 4th of October, 2011, at the dinner hosted by Dr Azhar Aslam, at the behest of Linda Whetstone, in Istanbul, Turkey. This idea was conceived in a meeting between Azhar, Linda and Syed Kamall in London. The dinner was attended by a group of classical liberal intellectuals. Majority were Muslims, or from mainly Muslim countries. The aim was to set up ‘Islam and a Free Society’ project as a formal structure.
The Islam and a Free Society project was initially suggested by Professor Atilla Yaylla, from Turkey, in 2007 and set up in 2009 when he was joined by Syed Kamal, Member of the European Parliament; Wan Saiful Wan Jan, now Director of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs in Malaya; Julian Morris, now Director of Research for the Reason Foundation and Linda Whetstone now chairman of Network for a Free Society.
The invitation paper requesting participation in dinner circulated stated ‘the way to Muslim renaissance, and beyond that the way for Muslims to contribute towards a Global Human Society, which I am firmly convinced can become a reality within this century, is by establishing and espousing the fundamental Islamic principles of Individual freedom and choice (political, social and economic), Rule of Law, Equality, Justice, Tolerance and Pluralism.
Although the task is enormous I believe it has never been more clear that Muslim intellectuals must provide the intellectual foundation of the ‘Principles of the Free Society’. We must expound these principles from within Quran, Sunnah and Muslim History. We must use these principles to change individual thinking, which in turn will change societies and help eliminate poverty, injustice and oppression that plague Muslim societies in particular, and across the world in general.’
First Conference 25 April Fes, Morrocco
The first Infol conference was held in Fez Morocco, on April 25th, 2012. A total of eight papers were presented by each of the main speakers who were followed by a commentator and then general discussion.
InfoL President, Dr Atilla Yayla from Turkey presented an extremely thoughtful and thought provoking paper entitled “Some considerations on the condition of social, political and economic thinking in the Islamic world”. Dr Azhar commented.
Dr Shafeeq Ghabra from Kuwait spoke about the Egyptian rebellion and Dr Ali Massoud from Egypt commented on his paper.
After the break Dr Khalil Ahmad from Pakistan talked about the rule of law and good governance in Islamic countries with Dr Hassan Basademir commenting and then Youcef Maouchi from Algeria gave an insight into it with his paper on Islamic law and its effect on development. Thomas Gur from Sweden was the commentator.
After lunch Dr Bilal Sambur presented a paper on “Islam, Freedom of Conscience, Worship and Expression” with Dr Detmar Doering Director of the Liberal Institute in Germany discussing it.
This was followed by a paper presented by Dr Maszlee Malik from the Islamic University of Malaysia on Islam and the “Provision of Welfare by Non-State Entities.”
The final session included a paper by Dr Hicham El Moussaoui of Morocco on “Islam and the Bridges to the Market Economy” followed by comments from Mohamad El Zaroug on the situation in Libya. Mr Zaroug had been part of the transitional authority in Libya following the uprising. Dr Benedikt Koehler commented on both papers and an animated debate followed.